A jam packed few weeks

I’ve just realised I haven’t written a blog for over 3 weeks, partly because John and I have been so busy, and partly because my training has been ‘more of the same’… some lows, when I’ve wondered what I’ve done entering such difficult trail races, and some highs when I’m pleased with what I’ve achieved so far, and enjoyed being out in the hills in the sunshine, fresh air and beautiful scenery.

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So what’s happened? The weekend after my successful Goldrush run, we went sea paddling on the Friday with Colwyn Canoe Club, and I was bit frightened by the big waves… it’s been a while since I’ve been out at sea and it took me a while to relax, but I enjoyed the trip and tried a bit of surfing, ending up with a dunking at the end of the session!

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On the Saturday we climbed Moel Siabod with some of our good friends. We enjoyed some scrambling and playing in the snow, and Rob and Ben cooked dinner for us in the evening, which was fantastic.

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Because of the huge meal, wine and late night, our long run was postponed until bank holiday Monday. I really struggled with the last 5k of the hilly 20k route. It was very muddy, which probably made my body work much harder. In contrast, our flat mid week 10k went very well and was my second fastest 10k ever, even though I wasn’t pushing the pace. The next long run had to be brought forward to Friday because of another busy weekend and this was another struggle. We did 22k with 800m of ascent and, unusually, John found this run difficult too, naming it ‘Agony!’ on his Strava post! We put this down to overtraining that week… Another lesson learned.

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At the weekend we had a canoe club social to watch the Banff Mountain Film Festival on the Saturday, and a day of kayak coaching on the River Dee at Llangollen on Sunday with River Flair. This went really well and my confidence on white water has improved again.

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After our difficult run, we took it easier through the week. John decided not to run at all until the weekend and I decided to do some medium distance runs and pace them slowly enough that I didn’t feel too uncomfortable. Our strategies worked well. We both enjoyed this weekend’s run and feel more confident about Excalibur, which we will compete in this Saturday. Note however, that it was only 11k because we are tapering ahead of the race… I can’t believe I’m saying ‘only 11k’! Not so long ago that would have been a long run! Some evidence that my training is working and I’m progressing 🙂

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Last weekend was another busy one, with time spent with my mum and dad, a Eurovision get together with friends and a ‘Try a boat, get afloat’ event with the canoe club.

I’m looking forward to Excalibur, I think. I’ve put in the training and we’ve done the distance and most of the ascent. We’re familiar with the route so I know it’s going to be tough, particularly the climb from the valley to the top of Moel Famau, but I’m sure I can complete it in a reasonable time, even though I’ll need to walk quite a lot of hills. I’m just going to do my best and see what happens. Hopefully, I’ll be pleased with my result.

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